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Gone Fishing! Reported Sickness Absenteeism and the Weather

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  • Jingye Shi

    (Research Institute of Economics and Management, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics)

  • Mikal Skuterud

    (Department of Economics, University of Waterloo)

Abstract

A fundamental challenge in informing employer-employee agency problems is measuring employee shirking activity. We identify the propensity of employees to misreport health in order to exploit favorable weather by linking Canadian weather data and survey data on short-term spells of sickness absenteeism among indoor workers during the non-winter months. The results point to a clear tendency for reported sickness absenteeism to rise with weather quality. Comparing across workers suggests larger marginal weather effects where shirking costs are higher, which we show is consistent with employees' marginal utility of outdoor leisure increasing in the interaction of their health and weather quality.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Waterloo, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1208.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision: Aug 2012
Handle: RePEc:wat:wpaper:1208

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  1. Bradley, Steve & Green, Colin & Leeves, Gareth, 2007. "Worker absence and shirking: Evidence from matched teacher-school data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 319-334, June.
  2. Arai, Mahmood & Skogman Thoursie, Peter, 2001. "Incentives and Selection in Cyclical Absenteeism," Working Paper Series 167, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
  3. Depken II, Craig A. & Redmount, Esther & Snow, Arthur, 2001. "Shirking and the choice of technology: a theory of production inefficiency with an empirical application," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 383-402, April.
  4. Monojit Chatterji & Colin J. Tilley, 2002. "Sickness, absenteeism, presenteeism, and sick pay," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(4), pages 669-687, October.
  5. Marie Connolly, 2008. "Here Comes the Rain Again: Weather and the Intertemporal Substitution of Leisure," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26, pages 73-100.
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  1. Good weather and absenteeism
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2012-12-06 16:01:00

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